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Thurles
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sunrise: 7:17 am
sunset: 7:30 pm
 

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Two-Mile-Borris Community Hall Offered For Sale

The Community Hall, which sits in the centre of the picturesque village of Two-Mile-Borris, near Thurles, Co. Tipperary, is being currently offered for sale.
The hall’s closure in recent times had caused many living within the local community, to pause regarding the issue of its closure, while they considering its immediate future.

However in recent weeks a ‘For Sale’ sign has materialised; displayed on its front portals, without, according to some very upset locals, any consultation with the local village population.

Same sale within this tight knit community has generated no little hidden anger, with many viewing this decision as ‘high handed’, according to some individuals with whom we spoke.

In 1995 the hall was placed in the care of the parish, before being later invested in the Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust. A committee had been formed to look after the day-to-day running of this local asset, however a recent lack of maintenance and supervision etc, brought about its temporary closure.

Known History Of Two-Mile-Borris Community Hall
The hall, we understand, originated back in the latter part of the 19th century; around the 1890’s, when the Irish Agricultural Organisation Society (IAOS), latter a co-operative movement became established in Ireland. A group of innovative farmers in the area came together to form the Two Mile Borris Agricultural Society; becoming shareholders.
The initial aim of this Society was to purchase seed; fertiliser, and farm machinery, hiring out the latter to aid the local farming community. Part of the building was also used as a dwelling house.

The first secretary of the Society was Mr Tom Fanning from the townsland of Skehana, Two-Mile-Borris.  The Society eventually went out of existence after some years.

Up until 1960 the ‘Society’, as the building was known, was used as a storeroom. Then the Fanning Family, from Skehana granted the use of the premises, including the now vacant dwelling area, to the Legion of Mary. Renovations were undertake by Mr John McGuire, a local building contractor and by local voluntary labour, before the Legion of Mary began to use the hall as a meeting place; a venue for fund-raising and as a tea rooms.

In the 1970’s Two-Mile-Borris Festival Committee used the hall, carrying out further developments in subsequent years. This same Festival Committee also purchased the field beside the school, without financial assistance from any lending agency. Locals were adamant in their praise of these former, hard working, community members, latter who raised the finance for both of these aforementioned two projects.
[We learn that this former committee included names such as: Fr. Bobby Harkin C.C., Mr Richard Ryan, Mr Jimmy Moloughney, Mr Gerry Bowe, Ms Josie Fanning, Mr Thomas Cussen and Mr Sean Cussen, latter all clearly visible to the fore and at the helm of this organisation in the past.]

Interesting to note that some of the community then sought a ‘Vegas’ type hall at that time, but all were ruled out of order.

In 1989 the late Mr Harry Ryan, Galboola, Littleton, then Chairperson of Tipperary Co. Council, for the first time since the halls inception, held a meeting of the Council Authority here in his own native Two-Mile-Borris.

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Rural Neglect Or Just Plain Arrogance

The first photograph shown on the slide-show hereunder was taken on January 1st, 2000. I had waited, well wrapped up against the frosty darkness, at the entrance to the Lady’s Well pedestrian pathway for the first rays of sunlight to break the eastern horizon.  This, after all, was to be the dawning of the first day of a promising new millennium for Thurles; that interval of time consisting of one thousand years.

On that morning, the view before me reminded me of Robert Frost’s poem, “The Road Not Taken”.

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;”

Here for anyone with even a modicum of imagination was a blank canvas presented by Mother Nature; being offered to develop a footpath attraction, which would entice safely for those who wished, for an hour or two, to avoid the noise; the glower of insipid tarmac and characterless cement, not to mention the stench of petrol and diesel exhaust emissions.  Here was the perfect opportunity to scatter naturally occurring, wild, flower seeds; Meadowsweet, Oxeye Daisies, Montbretia, Lady’s Smock, Red Clovers, Poppies, etc, thus developing a retreat, nay a safe place, for sharing with our bees, butterflies, birds, moths and other precious Irish pollinators.

Here was an opportunity to update a protective railing; add a few more park-style benches along the riverbank, allowing the rambler to sit and view a wild flower spectacle, which in the words of poet W. Wordsworth; just like his daffodils, could later “flash upon that inward eye, which is the bliss of solitude”.

Here in Tipperary politicians talk consistently about the need for better mental health supports.  Humans are becoming less connected with nature, and in doing so are losing an essential health buffer.  Yes, there exists strong mounting evidence that contact with nature has major and significant positive impacts on our mental health.

Our second picture was taken on July 29th 2018 last. Eighteen years on and the area has become further deteriorated, with only a few families daring to traverse the subsiding river bank, latter being consistently washed away each winter by torrential flooding.

Still, I suppose the Lady’s Well pedestrian pathway is not necessary as an everyday public walkway, unlike the pedestrian crossing at Cathedral Street, Thurles, which also further highlights the neglect by Templemore/ Thurles Municipal District Council management.
Readers will be aware that modern pedestrian signals on such crossings incorporate countdown timers into their design, that display the signal for pedestrians to cross using a green light.

Article 14 of the Road Traffic (Signs) Regulations, 1962

14. Either of the following types of mechanical signals may be used to control the crossing of a road by pedestrians at a place where traffic is controlled by traffic lights as prescribed in Article 13 of these Regulations:—
(a) a single lamp, which shall comply with the following conditions:—
(i) it shall face the pedestrians whose movements it is intended to control;
(ii) it shall show, when lit:—
(A) a green light through the full area of the lens or,
(B) a figure of a pedestrian in green on a black ground or,
(C) a message (such as the words ” Cross Now”) in white on a black ground, indicating that pedestrians may cross the road.

On February 1st 2018, we highlighted the fact that these pedestrian crossing lights were pointed in the wrong direction and do notface the pedestrians whose movements it is intended to control“.

On July 16th 2018, we again highlighted the fact that pedestrian crossing lights remained pointed in the wrong direction.

While less than a dozen people will traverse the collapsing Lady’s Well pedestrian pathway in any one day; when our schools re-open at the end of August 2018; together with Mass goers, shoppers and secondary school pupils, the Cathedral Street, pedestrian controlled intersection will exceed some 1,500 crossings per day, all of whom will remain blind as to their right to cross.

From a vehicles point of view, Road traffic regulations state that “a pedestrian shall exercise care and take all reasonable precautions in order to avoid causing danger or inconvenience to traffic and other pedestrians”

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Thurles – Accidents Just Waiting To Grant Compensation

To be fair Templemore/Thurles Municipal District Councillors are great for ‘Calling’ for things, especially on local radio; and more especially when health and safety issues are at stake, like hedge cutting etc. However Ratepayers and those paying Property Tax in Thurles should note that their subscriptions to both worthy causes are in danger of greatly increasing, with town Councillors continuing to ignore accidents just waiting to happen.

What with dangerous footpaths and giant potholes evident everywhere, no one is looking skyward, especially while in the vicinity of Slievenamon Road, Thurles, just outside Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home. [Note: Careful gawking if you are driving please.]

For some weeks the guts of a public street light has been precariously dangling some 30ft above the pavement/road. With even a slight breeze there is a real danger that wires attached will break off, resulting in a pedestrians head being split open or a passing car being seriously damaged.

We have contacted Thurles Gardaí and Tipp County Council (Tel: 0761 06 5000). Despite giving the Council an accurate address, they were anxious that we supply them with a ‘Pole Number’. (God Help Us, but sackings are necessary.)

What Do You Think: Maybe before the Schools reopen?
Meanwhile, Thurles.Info, some months ago, highlighted the dangers at the the Cathedral Street pedestrian level crossing, but again no mention at Council meetings.

Quote from our report dated February 1st 2018,, “One hundred and twenty yards away, in August 2017 last, a high sided truck made the careless decision to adjust the automated pedestrian crossing lights outside of Thurles Cathedral. The bulbs on this crossing used to feed motorised traffic information have been changed on two occasions since, yet the pedestrian information lights have not been realigned, leaving pedestrians unable to view the crossings signals, causing unnecessary delay to motorists. This is a busy crossing used by over 600 school children twice daily to get to and from rural school buses, not to mention the several hundred church pilgrims and local shoppers out walking each day.”

Guys you have got to write these things down with the butt of your pencil, or better still, go on local radio and highlight the issue.

UPDATE: Thurles.Info is happy to relate that as and from 5.00pm this evening an ESB technician has rectified the danger to pedestrians on the Slievenamon Road, Thurles, just outside Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home.

Begorra,  (Latter an exclamation of surprise traditionally attributed to the Irish), I think I might run for the local Council at the next local elections. I might try to get on Tipp FM to-morrow and announce my candidacy, or sure maybe I could run for President and if unsuccessful, work my way down.

Of course the one year old problem of the Cathedral Street pedestrian crossing and the danger to school students hasn’t been fixed yet, but I am ‘Calling’  on Tipperary County Council to be proactive in fixing this also, especially while screwdrivers are still out of the toolbox.

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“Listen Now Again” Josepha Madigan

The ‘Silent Spring’ Heritage Bill

Poem “Death of a Naturalist”.

[Extract courtesy of former Nobel laureate and the late great poet Mr Seamus Heaney]

“Bubbles gargled delicately, bluebottles
Wove a strong gauze of sound around the smell.
There were dragonflies, spotted butterflies,
But best of all was the warm thick slobber
Of frog-spawn that grew like clotted water
In the shade of the banks”.

Definition of a Politician: One who shakes your hand before an election and your confidence afterwards.

Fine Gael Party Vote Catcher Josepha Madigan, at the opening, this month, of the new Cultural and Heritage Centre at the Bank of Ireland, College Green, Dublin.

A dark day for Irish biodiversity

The new ‘Silent Spring’ Heritage Bill; now passed into law and which allows for the burning of vegetation in March and hedge-cutting in August under a pilot project, will now encompass the entire country; with July 5th 2018 surely one of the most despondent of days for Mother Nature.

Sole Fine Gael T.D. and Minister for Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan together with her predecessor “Burn the Heather” Humphreys, had cited road safety concerns as the reason behind this Bill.  This need to fix the unbroken, however, was more akin to an F.G election gimmick and a hoped-for increased farming vote, rather than the remedying of any slight contradiction existing between the Road Traffic Act and the Wildlife Act.

Name me one road traffic incident, in the last five years, which involved an overgrown hedge and what has the burning of heather (not Humphreys) and gorse to do with health and safety?

Needless to say, Fianna Fáil were not going to lose out on any attempt to sway farming voters either and to their shame, supported this unnecessary Bill.

Sinn Féin opposed the Bill and Co. Kerry party member Martin Ferris associated the declining bird populations to excessive burning. However, local Sinn Féin Templemore/ Thurles Municipal District councillor Mr David Doran has gone against the views of his party, on local TippFM radio, demanding a pro-active approach by Tipperary County Council in the cutting of hedges out of season in Co. Tipperary.

Let’s be honest, what would Josepha and her sweaty constituency of Dublin/Rathdown, actually know or understand, when it comes to the burning of heather and gorse and the cutting back of rural hedge-rows. Some 32,500 Irish people had signed a petition opposing this Bill, while conservationists, environmental groups, wildlife non-governmental organisations, and smart farmers supporting biodiversity, claimed this Bill was not based on any scientific basis whatsoever.

“When gorse is out of blossom, kissing’s out of fashion”.
Rural people should ask the question, “Have I heard the cry of the Curlew in recent years?”  “No”, I hear you say! Well currently, there are only some 125 pairs of breeding Curlew’s left in Rural Ireland (None I hasten to add in Dublin / Rathdown) and there is now a real risk that Josepha’s Heritage Bill will sound the death knell for not just Curlews, but for many other species of wildlife, including our already depleted bee population, which hugely depend from February to May on Gorse yellow pea-flowers as their early food source. Currently one third of Ireland’s 98 wild bee species are under threat of extinction.

The Bill will also result in severe consequences for late-nesting birds, such as the endangered Yellowhammer, latter Red-listed (Latter being the world’s most comprehensive inventory of the global conservation status of plant and animal species here in Ireland.), due to a decline in the breeding range and population, (Incidentally have you seen one in Co. Tipperary recently?).

Interesting to note that in England the penalties that can be imposed for criminal offences in respect of a single endangered bird, a nest or an egg, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, deservedly levies an unlimited fine, or up to six months imprisonment or both.

One wonders if Josepha, while taking on the role of priest and leading the prayers in the Church of St Therese in Mount Merrion, Dublin recently, did she recite the Apostles Creed, you know the line; “Maker of Heaven and Earth,” or perhaps come across the Dublin born Mrs Cecil F. Alexander’s hymn, “All things bright and beautiful”?

All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful, The Lord God made them all.
Each little flower that opens, Each little bird that sings,
He made their glowing colours, He made their tiny wings.

We agree with you Josepha, No Votes for Fine Gael here.

Just when we are about to acknowledge, both at home and globally, that our natural world is on its bare knees environmentally, this Fine Gael government, (whom thank God, we have successfully rid ourselves totally here in Co. Tipperary), has decided to weaken the very basic of conservation rules; despite the knowledge that we are incapable and incompetent in attempts to enforce current basic environmental laws, already existing.

Josepha’s legal motto, carried on her twitter account page states the Latin phrase; “Per tenebras lucem quaero”. [ Translation, “Through the darkness (or from darkness), I seek the light”]. Perhaps in Josepha’s case the legal phrase; “Qui male agit, odit lucem” might be considered more appropriate. [ Latter translated, “The one who commits evil shuns the light”.]

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Thurles Administration – Their Fitness To Practise In Question

“If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools.” [From a quote attributed to Plato (Greek philosopher).]

A third assessment examining the administration failures in Thurles by Templemore / Thurles Municipal District and Tipperary County Council.

First See Link (A) http://www.thurles.info/2018/07/02/polution-of-river-suir-continues/
Secondly See Link (B)  http://www.thurles.info/2018/07/09/st-patricks-cemetery-gates-reflect-an-image-of-thurles/

“A Question Of Fitness To Practise”
The entrance into any town in Ireland will quickly relay to the average visitor, information not just on the towns prosperity, but more importantly will indicate that this locality is a great place to live; a place to find work, with quality educational facilities; a place to visit and holiday in safety.  All of these signals observed will automatically relay to any visitor the existence of a thriving commercial and business centre.

Current signs displayed on entrance roads leading into Thurles, Co. Tipperary. Spot the 10 year old neglect.

So, let us examine 4 signs currently on view today to visitors entering Thurles, Co. Tipperary, on July 10th 2018.

Picture (1): Welcome To Thurles – Home of Erin Foods
This “Welcome To Thurles – Home of Erin Foods” sign still greets all Tipperary TD’s; Co. Council Elected Representatives and Tipperary Co Council Management as they enter our town.
The Thurles Erin Foods factory closed over 10 years ago, back in June 2008, after 46 years in production; with the loss of 140 jobs. It would have closed earlier were it not for an existing contract that Erin Foods held with the company ‘Batchelors‘ to supply goods and stock for some eight months after the initial purchase. The range of products that was then manufactured in Thurles are, now for the most part I understand, manufactured in British.

No replacement industry was ever found or put in place here in Thurles.

Picture (2): www.thurles.ie
This current sign which remains on view for the website ‘www.thurles.ie’ tells a further tale of the neglect of the town.  Someone in the Templemore/Thurles Municipal District or in Tipperary Co. Council, forgot to pay the annual €9 charge for the host name ‘Thurles.ie’. Same financial reminder would have been sent to the responsible body at least one month in advance and for several weeks after the failure to make payment.

On the March 21st 2017 the unpaid host name was again offered for sale and purchased by a Swedish casino site, Mardukas Technologies Limited, latter who then cybersquatted on the host name informing Thurles visitors that they would “Vi guidar dig till de bästa casinobonusarna” which translated means, “We will guide you to the best casino bonuses.”

Tipperary Co. Council have now regained control of the host name, since the 8th August 2017, but almost one year on in 2018, nothing has been done to put same back on line. We are not aware of how much of tax payer’s money, was wasted in any repurchase arrangements with Mardukas Technologies Limited. We are aware however that the site, together with the build and administration, originally exceeded well over €10,000.

Picture (3): Disc Parking In Operation – (“Buy discs where you see the sign P”)
Today this sign also greets visitors, however if you go looking for to buy Parking Discs where you see the sign P, expect to find details of a hefty fine stuffed behind your front windscreen wiper, when you return.

Disk Parking was introduced here in Thurles some 10 years ago. Certainly, Disc parking was in vogue in 2009, while pay-and-display parking was later introduced possibly in 2010. The Road Traffic Act of 1994: gave local authorities the power to make bye-laws governing the type of paid parking controls to be introduced in their areas. These bye-laws included, disc parking or pay-and-display parking.

Today we operate eParking, a new and improved “Park by Phone” system, introduced across Tipperary including Thurles town. The new car park here in Thurles for example is being funded using tax payer’s money.  Same will then be the subject of eParking or Pay-and-Display parking metres, to be imposed on these same tax payers who paid for its very introduction and development. One wonders who will feature in the picture as the blue ribbon is cut?.

Picture (4): North Tipperary Co. Council – “Working with the Community”.
The biggest joke and final insult to Thurles people, however must be the remaining sign shown as Picture No.4 above.

The website shown here on this sign is www.north tipperary.ie to which Google asks “Did you mean: http://www.southtipperary.ie”, latter in turn which does not exist either and suggests the Homepage of South Tipperary Dementia Project. No HTTP 301 permanent redirect code was inserted here by Tipperary Co Co Web Designers and Administrators.

Gone also is “AERTEL page 622″, with the new RTE Aertel desktop completely revamped several years ago, and without page 622.

As for a commitment to “Working with the Community”, for God’s sake give us a break. Right from the very top level of management, we need sackings here, to ensure that this situation of sheer neglect is no longer allowed to continue; after all we pay the wages.

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